How Does Cyber Security Help Us?

How Does Cyber Security Help Us?

Sophisticated criminals use the internet to steal money and information. Whether their weapons of choice include bogus email links, social media con artistry, or intricate viruses that infect even the most guarded systems, these virtual offenders do real damage in their victims’ lives. According to internet safety pioneer, McAfee, cybercrimes cost the economy over $400 billion annually.

The goal of cyber security is to protect sensitive digital information from those who would use it for nefarious reasons. While businesses need to take special measures to ensure the safety of their assets, everyone can benefit from a comprehensive cyber security plan.

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Internet Safety for the Average User

According to CNN News, 47% of American adults in 2014 had personal information fall into the hands of hackers. Even if you don’t run a business or have a lot of financial assets, your personal information is valuable to internet thieves. Stolen details are used to commit a variety of frauds that are designed to steal your money.

  • Thieves can use your personal information to create credit accounts that can take years to clear up.
  • Social media scammers target lonely singles, real estate hunters, and used car buyers with fake profiles and empty promises.
  • Email hackers steal your communications with family and friends in search of information they can use to extort money.

The internet can be a dangerous place, but perceptive browsers can take steps to reduce the chances of data breaches.

  • Install a security program on all of your devices. Set it to update and scan automatically. Make sure your program has a firewall.
  • Review your bank and credit card statements each month. Call the customer service line if you see any strange or unusual charges. You can also sign up for a credit monitoring service. These companies will alert you when an event affects your credit file.
  • Change your passwords at least once every 3 months. Random combinations of letters, numbers, and special characters may be hard to remember, but they are also harder for hackers to discover. Use a password program that saves and encrypts your logins to avoid memory lapses.
  • Don’t accept friend or message requests from people you don’t know on social media. Thieves use fake profiles to mine your account for pictures, locations, and other data they can use to steal from you.
  • Be careful with email links. Check the sender’s address to make sure the message really comes from the organization it claims to represent. Keep in mind that most financial businesses do not send email links or ask for sensitive details over the internet.

Small, regular steps can keep you safe from cyber thieves.

Cyber Safety for Large Companies

Large companies need to keep massive amounts of data safe while simultaneously allowing access to scores of employees. To take care of their cyber security needs, large companies need network security professionals.

Network security specialists use their knowledge of computer programming to keep the company’s systems secure against the latest threats. Typical duties for a network security specialist include:

  • Monitoring system access. This can include checking what web pages other employees visit for potential data breaches.
  • Testing software systems for unprotected entry points hackers might use to compromise the system
  • Updating hardware and software to repair and correct potential problems.
  • Training co-workers in safe internet use practices.

Specialists who work for larger companies may be part of a team headed by a Chief Information Security Officer (CISO). Each specialist may be responsible for one department, location, or set of servers, while the CISO oversees all technical and cyber operations for the company.

How Does Cyber Security Help Us?

Information security is a growing field full of opportunity and exciting new challenges. If you’re interested in helping to protect others from cyber criminals and earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer and Information Science with a Major in Cyber and Network Security, consider ECPI University for your educational needs. For more information on this exciting degree program, connect with a friendly admissions counselor today.

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